Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Las Cucarachas

La Cucaracha, La Cucaracha

Ya no puede caminar

Porque no tiene

Porque le falta

Dinero para gastar

To help Celebrate "Cinco de Mayo" I decided to share this song with a couple classes. One is a "Dual Emersion" classroom. I wasn't able to sing and play it for them because they were "testing". In fact, I've gotten no calls so far this week because both the districts I work in are "testing" for the State's future money and recognition. I was able to sing it in my volunteer kindergarten class and they loved it. I suggested that they "act it out" with pantomime. They didn't know what a "cockroach" was. Here are the rest of the English:

La cucaracha (x2)

Running up and down the house

La cucaracha (x2)

Quiet as a little mouse.

He gets in trouble, a lot of trouble

Snooping here and everywhere

La cucaracha (x2)

You must keep the cupboards bare.

Then one day when cook was baking

Wondered he, "What is she making?"

For it looked so appetizing

With the batter slowly rising.

To the edge he started skipping

Then he found that he was slipping

In the pie so hot and blazin'

Now he's just another raisin.

La Cuc...(x2)

Wandered in a dressing room

A lovely lady, a pretty lady

Couldn't see well in the gloom.

La Cuc...(x2)

Fell into her make-up bowl

When she had painted, she nearly fainted

Thought her face had grown a mole.

Later on when he was older

Then he found the nights much colder

'Til he saw a sleeve wide open

Snug and warm as he was hopin'.

'Twas the time and place for napping

'Til somebody started slapping

Woe betide the little midget

He had made the owner fidget.

La Cuc...(x2)

Met a little pekingnese

La Cuc...(x2)

Bit his nose and made him sneeze.

The little doggie, the little doggie

Though he dug and dug and dug,

La Cuc (x2)

He was safe beneath the rug.

Then one day when he was thinner

He just looked around for dinner

And he tumbled, never thinking

In the soup and started sinking.

"Oh!" the cook began to holler

Grabbed the butler by the collar

Out the window went the platter

But our little friend was fatter.

La Cuc (x2)

Woke up on election day

La Cuc (x2)

Heard the things they had to say.

A lot of lying and alibi-ing

Empty heads without a plan

La Cuc...(x2)

Said, "I'm glad I'm not a man!"

Then one day he saw an army

Said, "The drums and bugles charm me

Still if all the world are brothers

Why should these men fight the others?

Guess it's just for love and glory

Who'd believe another story

These are men so brave and plucky.

Look at me, boy am I lucky!"

La Cuc...(x2)

Wondered where his love could be

La Cuc...(x2)

Wandered on so mis'rably.

The bees and beetles and old boll weevils

Chased him off with many "Scats!"

First they would scold him

And then they told him

They were bug aristocrats.

Then one day while in the garden

He just said, "I beg your pardon,"

To a lady cucaracha

And he said, "Now I've gotcha!"

She was coy but she was willing

And for years their love was thrilling

They met at half past seven

Up in cucaracha heaven.

La cucaracha (x2)

Just the same as you and I

He got the jitters, the sweets and bitters

Lived and loved and said, "Goodbye!"
Here are some of the "facts"(?) about cockroaches I learned on Wikipedia. Some have a direct or metaphoric relationship to our Public Schools and their plight with all the "testing": They are seemingly ubiquitous, the ultimate survivors. They will probably be here long after we are gone as a species. It is popularly suggested that they will "inherit the Earth" if humanity destroys itself with a nuclear war.
Only about 10% of the homeowners in the U.S.A. feel that cockroaches are a threat to their family's health. Development from eggs to adults takes 3-4 months. They live up to a year. Females may produce up to eight egg cases in a lifetime (300-400) and only need to be impregnated once to lay eggs for the rest of its life. They are among the hardiest insects (largest too) and can remain active for a month without food or a limited amount (glue on the back of a postage stamp). Some can go without air for 45 minutes and slow down their heart rate. The first fossils of our modern "roaches" appear in the early Cretaceous Period. Their ancestors with external longer ovipositors lived 354-295 million years ago in the Carboniferous Period. Termites are in the same family. They are omnivorous and like warmer climates. They breathe through a system oftubes called tracheae and don't need a mouth or windpipe. They can survive sterile surgical decapitation for very long periods epecially if recently fed. (a few weeks) They retain a limited capacity to learn even though hampered by no feelers or sight. They can survive 6-15 times the radiation we can and only the fruit fly beats it. They are mainly nocturnal and exhibit emergent behavior. They can communicate and cooperate as groups and follow scent/fecal trail to safer places. They can associate vanilla and peppermint with a sugary treat. Their allergens appear to worsen asthma symptoms especiallywith inner-city children. Most common: American, is found in both North and South. Most exotic sounding: Madagascar Hissing and True Death's Head conger up images of dread and "tasty treats for "survivors on TV". Freezing and chemical may be the best pest deterants at this time. Sulfur burning and the "Vegas Roach Trap" may last up to ten years.
Here's the rubric. What can we learn from them? How are ourpervasive tests and the training for them hindering/turning off our youth's abilities to learn and adapt? Are we testing out of them any new emergent/learning-adapting behaviors? Does anyone care anymore? RRR

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It was not surprising to see a "cucaracha" in a supporting role in the latest Pixar masterpiece - Wall-e. They will certainly be the survivors and will probably be robotic. RRR